Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN Legal & Legislation

Florida Alert: Matt Gaetz Never Quits Fighting for Second Amendment Rights

Sunday, February 28, 2016

DATE:   February 28, 2016
TO:       USF & NRA Members and Friends
FROM: Marion P. Hammer
  USF Executive Director 
  NRA Past President

 

As we begin the last two weeks of the 2016 Legislative Session, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R- Shalimar) is still standing up and fighting to get Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla (R-Miami) to do the right thing and let the Open Carry bill be heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee.  

As you recall, Sen. Diaz de la Portilla is stonewalling and deliberately refusing to give the committee and the full Senate an opportunity to vote on the bill.

An Opinion Editorial by Rep. Gaetz, calling for the bill to be heard was published today in the North West Florida Daily News.  Read it below and please thank Rep. Gaetz for continuing to fight for your rights.  matt.gaetz@myfloridahouse.gov


NWFdailynews.com

GUEST COLUMN: 
Florida Senate should let debate begin on open carry


By REP. MATT GAETZ | Special to the Daily News
Posted Feb. 28, 2016 at 1:00 PM 

The organizing principle of my public service is Constitutional liberty. If government constrains itself to the Constitution, free markets, free enterprise and free people can thrive. Otherwise, we get catastrophic consequences like ObamaCare, lawless executive orders and a government that (often corruptly) picks winners and losers.

In a world of uncertainty, the Second Amendment to the Constitution is undeniably clear: The right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

Today, Florida is one of only five states infringing on the rights of citizens to "openly carry" handguns. That's right. Open carry is legal in various forms in 45 other states. Florida joins California, New York, Illinois and (oddly) South Carolina as the only states to totally prohibit open carry. Thirty states do not require a license, while 15 do.

Weeks ago the Florida House of Representatives passed a bill I authored allowing Floridians with concealed carry permits to openly carry in a holster. It was a bipartisan 80-36 vote. The bill was endorsed by the Florida Police Chief's Association, Unified Sportsmen of Florida and the National Rifle Association. The Florida Chamber of Commerce helped draft provisions to allow private property owners to prohibit open carry if they choose.

Then, the Senate Judiciary Chairman killed it. He refused to even allow a vote on open carry, likely because the bill would have passed. No one Senator should have the right to unilaterally block critical legislation from even having a vote - especially when constitutional rights are implicated.

There is no constitutional, statistical or rational basis to disallow open carry in Florida. According to the U.S. Department of Justice's own data, in open carry states you are:

  23 percent less likely to be the victim of violent crime

  5 percent less likely to be murdered

  38 percent less likely to be the victim of armed robbery, and

  23 percent less likely to be the victim of aggravated assault.

Open carry is not a utopian solution to violence. Many factors impact crime rates. But, reasonable people cannot disagree on the statistical fact that open carry does not increase violence.

I find it compelling that concealed carry permit holders are remarkably law-abiding. According to Florida Department of Law Enforcement crime data, permit holders are six times less likely to commit crimes than law enforcement officers.

If I am elected to serve in the Senate next year, I'll again file much needed open carry legislation. I'll also pursue changes to Florida Senate rules to allow for more transparent debate on the issues facing Florida.

Florida should be an open carry state. The Florida Senate should let the debate begin. I'm ready for it.

Matt Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach, was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 2010 and has been subsequently reelected three times. He is the immediate past Chairman of the Criminal Justice Subcommittee and currently chairs the Finance & Tax Committee.

http://www.nwfdailynews.com/opinion/20160228/guest-column-florida-senate-should-let-debate-begin-on-open-carry

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IN THIS ARTICLE
Florida Open Carry Campus Carry
TRENDING NOW
The Washington Post Gives Gun Control Group and U.S. Senator Three Pinocchios on Suppressors

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, March 24, 2017

The Washington Post Gives Gun Control Group and U.S. Senator Three Pinocchios on Suppressors

Last week, we wrote about Americans for Responsible Solutions’ irresponsible misinformation about The Hearing Protection Act on Twitter.  Apparently, we weren’t the only ones who took notice of ARS’s complete disregard for the facts on ...

Seattle Gun Tax Fails to Generate Projected Revenue, Succeeds in Burdening Rights

News  

Gun Laws  

Friday, March 24, 2017

Seattle Gun Tax Fails to Generate Projected Revenue, Succeeds in Burdening Rights

On March 16, 2017, the Seattle Times reported that Seattle city officials were reluctant to release data on the revenue generated by the city’s firearms and ammunition tax, citing taxpayer confidentiality concerns. Less than a ...

Trump’s Supreme Court Nominee Embraces Heller and Originalism During Senate Hearings

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, March 24, 2017

Trump’s Supreme Court Nominee Embraces Heller and Originalism During Senate Hearings

Judge Neil M. Gorsuch, President Trump’s pick to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia on the U.S. Supreme court, asserted during his confirmation hearings this week that Scalia’s landmark Second Amendment opinion in District of ...

More Firearms, More Firearms Owners, Fewer Fatal Accidents

News  

Second Amendment  

Friday, March 24, 2017

More Firearms, More Firearms Owners, Fewer Fatal Accidents

The National Safety Council released the 2017 edition of its annual Injury Facts report this week, and it contains welcome news about firearm safety. 

Oklahoma: Multiple Pro-Gun Bills Passed Out of the House

Friday, March 24, 2017

Oklahoma: Multiple Pro-Gun Bills Passed Out of the House

This week, the Oklahoma House of Representatives passed multiple pro-gun bills, including House Bill 1721, House Bill 2323, and House Bill 2322. 

Illinois: Gun Seizure Bill Could be Heard by House at Any Time

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Illinois: Gun Seizure Bill Could be Heard by House at Any Time

The Illinois House of Representatives could consider House Bill 2354 at any time.

Continuing to Fight in California

Friday, March 24, 2017

Continuing to Fight in California

We are excited to inform you of our new California specific webpage – Stand and Fight California.   On this page you will find State Legislation, Legal Updates, and How to Get Involved, among other California ...

Virginia Action Needed: Governor McAuliffe Vetoes Self-Defense Bills

Monday, March 27, 2017

Virginia Action Needed: Governor McAuliffe Vetoes Self-Defense Bills

Following their passage in the Virginia General Assembly, Governor Terry McAuliffe vetoed multiple self-defense bills; Senate Bill 1299, Senate Bill 1300, House Bill 1852, and House Bill 1853. 

News  

Monday, March 27, 2017

NRA Applauds Texas State Senate for Passing SB 16

The National Rifle Association Institute for Legislative Action applauds the Texas Senate today for passing Senate Bill 16, legislation that substantially reduces License To Carry fees in the Lone Star state.

Maryland: House Passes Pro-Carry Legislation

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Maryland: House Passes Pro-Carry Legislation

Yesterday, the Maryland House of Delegates passed House Bill 1036 by a 97-41 vote.

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -
NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.